Configuring a Backup Domain Controller in Reflection X Advantage

  • 7022067
  • 07-Apr-2014
  • 24-Mar-2018


Reflection X Advantage


This technical note describes how to configure and use a backup domain controller to provide failover support for Reflection X Advantage domains. Use a backup domain controller to restore domain functionality and session settings if your primary domain controller fails. In addition, after your backup controller is running, users will be able to rejoin any running sessions that were configured to support suspend and resume functionality.


Backup Procedures for Version 5.X

We recommend that you install and use Reflection X Advantage version 5.0 or later. Version 5.0 introduced a new database format that supports backup without stopping the Reflection X Advantage service.

Set Up the Reflection X Advantage Domain

Configure your domain settings and domain nodes before you configure the backup domain controller. The following procedure provides a general outline. For detailed information, see "Setting up Domain Components" in the product help (

  1. Install the Reflection X Advantage Domain Controller feature on two computers.

         This note refers to these two computers as the "primary domain controller" and "backup domain controller."

  1. Stop the Reflection X Advantage Service on the computer that will be your backup domain controller.
  2. Install X Manager for Domains and the X Administrative console on an administrative workstation and use these applications to configure and test session and client settings.
  3. Install and configure one or more domain nodes. This is required if you want to support resuming running sessions after a change of domain controllers. Sessions running on a node will remain active even if the primary domain controller fails and needs to be replaced with a backup. Users will be able to rejoin these sessions once the backup domain controller is running.

Note: You should configure nodes separately from the domain controller. This is primarily so that if the computer hosting the domain controller fails, the domain nodes are not affected. In addition, when nodes and a domain controller are both running on the same computer, they are controlled by a common service process; so it is not possible to restart just the domain controller or just a node or nodes without restarting the entire service. By isolating the domain controller on a separate machine you have the flexibility to restart just the domain controller or just the nodes without impacting the other.

Copy Settings to the Backup Domain Controller

To configure the backup domain controller, you need to copy the domain database and the service configuration files from the primary domain controller to the backup domain controller. File locations for these files are provided below for both Windows and UNIX systems. Note the following:

  • The domain database is stored in a version-specific sub folder within the db folder. This database stores all settings changes made by any user logged into the domain. Back up this file after any configuration changes made by the domain administrator using either X Manager for Domains or the X Administrative Console. If your users also configure and save their own private session and client definitions, you should configure backup of the database at regular intervals to save these user settings.

Note: Confirm that you are backing up the correct version of the database. If you have installed multiple versions of Reflection X Advantage, you will see more than one subfolder in the db folder. Be sure to back up the latest version.

  • The service configuration content is stored in a folder called conf. This folder contains certificates and private key files that enable the domain controller to connect securely to domain nodes. The folder also contains an XML file that includes required domain settings. Back up the content of this folder after any changes you make to node configuration.

Note: When the Reflection X Services is running, the conf folder contains two additional files called service.address and These files do not need to be copied; they are recreated each time you start the service.

Windows File Locations

On Windows systems, the db and conf folders are in the Windows "All Users profile" folder. (This folder is hidden by default.) The location of the db and conf folders depends on your version of Reflection X Advantage.

Reflection X Advantage 5.1 and higher (new installs):

C:\Users\<user>\Documents\Micro Focus\Reflection\db\<latest_db_version>\flatfiledb-data.xml


Reflection X Advantage 4.x and 5.0 (and upgrades to these versions)C:\ProgramData\.attachmate\rx\db\<latest_db_version>\flatfiledb-data.xml



UNIX File Locations

On UNIX systems, the db and conf directories are in the program installation directory. For example:

/opt/rxadvantage/rx/db/<latest_db_version>/ flatfiledb-data.xml


Switching to the Backup Domain Controller

To switch to your backup domain controller:

  1. Start the Reflection X Advantage service on the backup domain controller.
  2. Reconfigure DNS to point to the backup server.

Test a Hot Swap with a Running Session

Use the following procedure to confirm that running sessions configured to support suspend and resume functionality can be rejoined after the primary domain controller is replaced by the backup. Before you begin, configure your domain and copy files to the backup domain controller as described above. Ensure that the Reflection X Service is running on your primary domain controller and is stopped on the backup domain controller.

  1. Start X Manager for Domains and configure a session definition that supports suspend and resume functionality. (On the session definition General tab, under "Remote session services" select any option other than "None.")
  2. Start a client that uses the session you configured in step 1.
  3. Stop the Reflection X Service on the primary domain controller.
  4. Start the Reflection X Service on the backup domain controller.
  5. Reconfigure DNS to point to the backup server.

Note: DNS can take a while to flush. A command like ipconfig /flushdns (on Windows) will speed up the process.

  1. Return to the system running the client you started in step 2. You will see a message saying "Domain connection lost." Click OK to close this message. This opens a domain login dialog box. Use this to log in again to the domain.

Note: The first time you log in after a domain controller switch, you may see a network communications error message in the status bar. This is the result of error logging that takes place after the initial domain controller shutdown. You can ignore this message.

  1. Under Session Definitions, you should see your test session with yellow arrows indicating that it is still running but not joined. Right-click this session and select Join.

Your X client display should redisplay on your desktop.

Backup Procedures for Versions Prior to 5.0

If you are running version 4.2 or earlier, it is possible to back up the domain controller, however note the following differences from the procedure outlined above.

  • Before you copy the content of the \db\<version>\ directory from the primary domain controller, you must stop the Reflection X Advantage service that's running on this system.
  • In these versions, the database content is stored in multiple files rather than in a single XML file. To back up the database, you must copy all of these files to the backup domain controller.

Additional Information

Legacy KB ID

This document was originally published as Attachmate Technical Note 2722.